To have a profitable online business, you need to help your visitors know, like, and trust you. And to do this in a competitive online marketplace, you must help them feel confident in you and your company.
The good news is that confidence can be built and strategies for it abound. The most important ones are outlined below.
1. Give your website a professional look and easy navigation.
Consider how many times you have visited a site and left it in less than 10 seconds simply because of the way it looked.
While there are many ways to cut costs on the internet, my suggestions is to spend a few extra dollars on a quality website or graphic designer. Your conversion rates will increase dramatically if you have a well-crafted website. Visitors will assess you and your business as confident, competent, experienced, and authentic. And they’ll apply the same estimation to your products and services.
Remember to keep your navigation simple and ensure your visitors understand exactly what to do and where to find any information they might need.
To assess the navigation of your website, ask yourself whether you have the following:
- A clear call to action
- Clear navigation links that lead to relevant and useful content
- An easily located opt-in box with an enticing free offer
- A clear path to your products and services as well as your “about” page
Once you’ve created or updated your website so it instills confidence, it’s time to let visitors experience what you offer.
2. Let visitors sample your cookies.
Have you ever walked into a shopping center and passed a cookie shop giving away free samples? If you’re like most people, you grab a sample. If it’s a really good cookie, you turn around and head back to the store. That’s the power of a great free sample!
When people visit my site looking for a speaker, my cookies (free samples) include the following:
1. A well-crafted video of me on stage on a six-city speaking tour (building confidence in my speaking ability and credibility)
2. Three free downloadable audios of me training students on important online marketing topics (showing my skills in online marketing education)
3. Dozens of well-written, how-to articles on marketing as well as content from my books (further building trust and confidence)
4. Opt ins for my mini course and enewsletter (giving visitors automated content over time)
In effect, visitors who visit my site know me before they ever speak with me. This is exactly what you want to do with your website as well.
Here are some questions to ponder:
- How can you add more valuable free content to your site?
- Can you transfer your written content to other media like audio and video?
- Can you chunk down articles to smaller bite-size bits to share on social media?
The more visitors can experience you through various forms of media on your website, the quicker they will know, like, and trust you, and the quicker they will want to do business with you, too.
3. Build more confidence through testimonials and social proof.
Social proof is much more effective than tooting your own horn when it comes to promoting buyer activity—it helps to have evidence of satisfied customers.
Ask some of your satisfied customers to write a short testimonial for your website. Assuming they’re happy with what they bought from you, most customers will do this quite gladly. Ask your customers to be specific about what they valued and ask them to show results.
4. Sell the result.
Never underestimate how much people care about their own problems first, last, and always. People want to know how your product and services will solve their problem, and they want to know why your solution is better than what everyone else offers.
What this means is that you must clearly define the benefits of your products and services for your target audience. What result do your audience members want to obtain?
To do this, put yourself in your prospects’ shoes. Why do they want what you have? How are they going to use it and why is it the best solution for their problems? If you listen to your customers, you’ll know the answer to these questions and more.
People purchase things for one of two reasons: Either they want to increase pleasure (e.g., glowing health, freedom, popularity) or they want to decrease pain (e.g., stress, financial problems, poor health). So when communicating with your customers, emphasize the most compelling benefits (or results) of your products and services. Then make sure you deliver on your promises.
Take a few minutes to list the most unique and desirable benefits about your products and services. Answer these questions:
- What are the top three to five results my customers really want to achieve?
- How are my offerings different from my competitors?
If you drill deep on this exercise, you’ll have essential copy you can use for all your marketing (web copy, videos, elevator pitch, webinars, and more).
5. Give a clear call to action.
One of the biggest online marketing mistakes is not having a specific “call to action” or “next step” for a website visitor.
Once your target customer has made it to your website and sampled your cookies, make sure they know what you want them to do next. Give clear and specific directions. Be very specific about what’s in it for them, but here are some sample actions you might want to encourage your customers to take:
- Register for your webinar that will teach them what they need to know.
- Sign up for your five-part mini course that shares secrets to make their life easier.
- Call your office to set up a consultation that will get them the service they need.
- Press a “Buy” button to purchase your course that makes learning a new skill easy and fun.
Another good call to action is information sharing. Make sure you place social media share buttons at strategic points on your website:
- Pin this
- Tweet this
- Share this video
- Comment below